After doing some research on the customer journey, I came across the hotel wheel a few months ago. From there I realized that any company has a wheel which indicates the customer’s journey from the first interaction right through to the follow ups and customers returning. Therefore, a restaurant should also have a wheel that indicates the customer’s journey.
Here is the restaurant wheel as Travelling Mystery Guest sees it:
- Internet research – Customers choose restaurants on recommendation from friends on Facebook or Twitter, from websites like EatOut, Food24 and so forth and make final decisions from other platforms like TripAdvisor, Hello Peter and reviews on the restaurant’s pages like Facebook and Google+.
- Booking – From there the booking is made, and here the customer makes his / her first acquaintance with the restaurant. This means that even the person on telephone duty has a huge responsibility regarding customer experience.
- Directions – A part of the customer journey that is often neglected. Customers expect to find proper directions to the destination. This means that restaurants need to provide the destination’s address on all of their internet pages, and even better, be on Google Places / Google Maps in order for customers to find the destination without any trouble.
- Arrival – Customers expect to be welcomed and that, especially when they have booked, the restaurant is prepared for their arrival.
- The visit – This section can be discussed in a whole lot of detail (consider joining Travelling Mystery Guest for an in depth workshop on the Restaurant Wheel). This is where waiters and the restaurant really need to impress, as it is now not only about the communication, but also about the taste, the atmosphere, the timing, the staff’s knowledge, the restaurant’s image and the overall customer experience.
- Departure – Many restaurants tend to neglect this part of the wheel, even though it is still important. Customers want to be invited back and they want the opportunity to say something about their If restaurants don’t ask, they probably wouldn’t know if guests had enjoyed the experience or not.
- Follow up – Not many restaurants do this, as they don’t always have the customers’ contact details (except if the customer has made a booking). Still, follow-ups are very important, even if it is done universally via social media. This also gives you the opportunity to learn more about current trends and expectations among your fans.